Sunday, May 29, 2011

Makin' a Shrimp Po'boy

So I made my own shrimp po'boy this evening for dinner. 

As you know, probably, I've been a bit obsessed with shrimp po'boys since I visited New Orleans last month for the American Educational Research Association.  While in New Orleans for five days, I had five shrimp po'boys, from four different vendors, and sent photos and comments on them to Facebook.  When I returned to Chicago, I still had the taste in my mouth, so I set out to find the best shrimp po'boy in Chicago.  I've been on that quest for about 6 weeks, having had probably 6 different ones from around the city, again sending comments and photos to Facebook. 

I've made shrimp po'boys at home before, but now I feel a bit like I've got some expertise building up on the subject.  So this evening, I decided to make my own.

I used frozen first thawed them in some warm water and then peeled them.

Then, I cut off a 10" slice of french bread and sliced it, leaving a thin piece as a hinge.

I put a nice Louisiana Fish Fry remoulade sauce that I purchased on one side of the bun.  I didn't have any tomatoes (and don't really like them that much either), so I chopped up some fresh red pepper. 

I added some mayonnaise to the other half of the bun (having recently had a po'boy with both may and remoulade and liking it muchly), and then some dill pickles.

Then, I some chopped romaine lettuce, and a few drops of Frank's Louisiana Hot Sauce to add a little more zing.

I had some Andy's Cajun Fish Fry Breading, which is pretty yummy (corn meal, flour, and spices, basically), and decided to fry the shrimps in that. I just washed the shrimps after peeling and rolled them in the breading to make a very light coating, and fried them in a very shallow pool of hot olive oil.

Then, I fried the shrimps to perfection (about 5 minutes, turning half-way through).

Then, added the shrimp to the sandwich, and served it (to myself) with a side of raw zucchini. 

The big challenge was getting my mouth around it--it was a bit thick---and a bunch of the shrimps fell out when I tried to fold it. But I managed to get it folded, and fit it into my mouth.


The result was, if I do say so myself, absolutely YUMMY!  The overall flavor was great...the texture was perfect...the shrimps were nice and firm, and the breading just crunchy enough without being intrusive.

There are a couple of things I would will do differently next time:

1.  chop the fresh red pepper finer and use a bit less
2.  use a bit less lettuce
3.  leave off the Frank's Louisiana Hot Sauce since the remoulade and cajun breading provided plenty of flavor and spice
4. serve something other than raw zucchini with it...the flavor just wasn't right on the side of the po'boy.

All in all, a quite satisfying culinary experience!